Skip to main content

Blogger Night In Canada

There was a very nice piece yesterday on Hockey Night in Canada about the rise of hockey blogs, focusing in particular on the group centered around the Washington Capitals (where owner Ted Leonsis has fostered their growth), and ending with host Ron McLean giving some of our favorite sites some coveted face time on hockey's biggest stage.

It's a wonderfully comprehensive and balanced piece, and there's a few points that are worth responding to.

They spoke with Kevin Allen to get the professional sportswriter's view of the growing impact of hockey blogging, and he spouted some of the more obvious arguments about the whole sector being in its "infancy", and decrying the fact that bloggers don't have a particular editor or publisher to answer to in the event that they cross the bounds somehow.

First off, amateur online sportswriters have been going at it for over 10 years now, as Spector, PJ Swenson, myself, and others can attest. The field is hardly in its infancy, but rather, full-blown acne-ridden adolescence at least. I received full press access from the Red Wings back in 1997 and 1998 while writing for In the Crease, under terms which both parties agreed to; act like you belong there (no asking for autographs), and let the deadline-guys get their quotes first. It's not that hard, folks.

As to the accountability issue, the point has been well made on other blogs that while we don't enjoy the benefits of editors (and believe me some of us could really use one), the accountability comes from our audience. If writers get reckless and start spewing garbage, their readers and fellow bloggers won't continue to support them. A common sense step for any team to go through when considering whether to grant a blogger's access request is to review not just their traffic numbers, but the extent to which their peers value their work. Hopefully the work that Eric McErlain has launched will help the NHL's teams figure out how to do this in a fairly standardized fashion, but the lack of such standards shouldn't hold up the show today. If anything, a team-by-team approach can help to develop best practices on how to credential amateurs.

All in all, though, it was a very fine piece and well worth a few minutes of your time.

And yes, I know there was a heck of a Predators game last night; I'll get to that later!

Popular posts from this blog

How I'm Trying To Make Money Sports Blogging

To kick off this series of articles general sports-blogging articles here at OTF Classic, I think it's best to start with a comment that Brad left here last week, after I shared my goals for 2012, which include specific revenue targets:
I considered diving into the world of internet marketing myself, but I felt that my friends would hate me for bugging them about stuff. I mean, it's pretty low-risk high-reward, so it's tempting. I wouldn't mind reading about tips on how to maximize impact of blogging in general to make it a legitimate income source. Trying to make money at sports blogging can be a very touchy subject - for the vast majority of us, this is an activity we pursue to both exercise our creativity and share our love of the game, whether it's hockey, football, badminton, whatever, with fellow fans. Mixing that personal conversation with a commercial message can turn people off, especially if it becomes too intrusive for the reader.

It's not unreasonabl…

Canadian Baloney, starring James Mirtle

A tireless refrain from the Canadian media is that Nashville is an absolute failure as a hockey market, and failing to move the team north of the border is an exercise in folly by the NHL.

Our latest exhibit comes from James Mirtle, usually one of the more thoughtful hockey bloggers extant:
But Nashville, quite simply, has proven it cannot sustain an NHL hockey team. Even with the lowest ticket prices in the entire league (I know: I've looked into flying there for a game or two) and a ridiculously forgiving arena lease, the team has had attendance issues despite having one of the best records in the league.

It's not a matter of Canadians not wanting teams in the southern U.S.; I've argued time and again in favour of teams like Dallas and Tampa Bay that have supported their teams and really brought something to the table in terms of bringing news fans and new energy to the game. That's a good thing.

The Predators, however, are not that, not in the beginning and certainly no…

Get Your NHL Super Schedule 2008-9 Right Here!

Click here for the 2009-10 NHL Super Schedule, at my new site,!

The NHL announced the 2008-9 Regular Season schedule today, so of course, it's time right here to publish my very own NHL Super Schedule 2008-9 as well.

For those unfamiliar with what I did last year, the NHL Super Schedule is a spreadsheet that I put together and make publicly available via Google Documents*. It includes an entry for each game in each team's 82-game regular season schedule, with additional information such as how far that team has had to travel since its last game, how many days have passed since that previous game, and various statistics relative to the opponent that evening, such as 2007-8 Winning Percentage, Goals Per Game, Goals Against Per Game, etc. For example, you can total the distance that each team will travel during the upcoming season, or find who plays the most back-to-back games. Check out which team faces the toughest opposing offenses, or which power plays…